Clayhall guitarist scoops coveted music award

A TALENTED student has won a prestigious music award at a ceremony hosted by Radio 1 DJ Edith Bowman.

Mitchell Burns scooped the Outstanding Music Student of the Year award as part of the Access to Music and Armstrong Learning ceremony in Birmingham.

Speaking about his win, he said he was “really chuffed”.

He added: “It proves that hard work really does pay off.”

Mr Burns, of Gayfere Road, Clayhall, is in his final year on the performing musician course at Access to Music’s east London centre.

The centre provides popular music education and training.

The 20-year-old student was competing against the whole of his college, which numbers about 100 students.

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He was recognised for his dramatic improvement on the bass guitar.

He started off as a self-taught musician. Two years on and he is now top of his class.

He said: “Considering where I started, I was basically one of the worst bass players in the school. But I put in the work at home, practising up to four hours a day. I was working on stuff I didn’t even know existed.”

Snow and icy conditions unfortunately prevented the student from attending the ceremony itself.

“I was gutted because I was going to be introduced to some great musicians.

“I was really looking forward to meeting them,” said Mr Burns.

The ceremony was a Brit Award-style occasion and guests were treated to a night of entertainment from new student artists as well as a performance from French band Slide on Venus.

Mr Burns plays in two bands in his spare time, allowing him to dabble in progressive rock and alternative rock styles.

He also plays bass guitar for a gospel group at his local church.

He added: “I’ve got another year of college so hopefully I’ll be able to get another award.”